Why Social Media Flaunting Hurts You At Work

NEW YORK (MainStreet)—Competition among employees is worse today than it was a decade ago, according to a new study. An Office Team study found that 49% of senior managers believe employees are more competitive with each other today than they were 10 years ago.

"Rivalry between coworkers can often become more intense when the economy is uncertain and people feel pressure to prove themselves," said Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam. "Although it's natural for employees to want to stand out among their colleagues, it shouldn't be at the expense of others."

Co-worker competition can be magnified by postings on social media websites, such as Twitter and Facebook.

"Jealousy in the workplace exists, and it can create significant tensions between workers that are supposed to be colleages and collaborators, which goes back to what you share with your co-workers and the world on your Facebook page and who you friend or follow," said Reynol Junco, a faculty associate at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University.

Posting a photo of yourself on Facebook holding up a new iPad could be perceived as a flaunting behavior by others depending on facial expression and pose, according to a new study published in the Journal of Marketing Research (and also straight-up common sense).

"The results indicate that Americans don't like approval seeking behavior," said Rosellina Ferraro, an associate professor of marketing at the University of Maryland's Smith School of Business. "We want to think people use a brand because they like it not because they are showing off."

This "Look at Me! Look at Me! Conspicuous Brand Usage, Self-Brand Connection and Dilution" study surveyed various posts with and without photos.